Towards voting in the 21st century / by kevin murray

While most Americans use the internet and hi-technology in one form or another, virtually every day, somehow when it comes to voting, of which, we have been told repeatedly that it is our civic duty to vote, the United States, has refused the golden opportunity to update and to modernize its voting practices.  For instance, paying bills online, paying taxes online, and communicating online, are all done routinely, yet, for the vast majority of Americans that even bother to vote, they must actually drive, or walk to their polling booth, stand in a line, and then when it is their turn, they are finally able to vote. 


When it comes to peer nations, the amount of eligible voters in America that vote, is significantly below the OECD average, with an estimated 55.7% of the American voting age population, actually voting in a given election.  If, the United States, wants to see that number rise substantially they should first implement a condition, that no high school graduate, may obtain their diploma, unless they first register to vote, and if they are under the age of eighteen, the registration, would not come into effect, until such time that they turned eighteen. The second step to get more people to vote, is to allow people to vote from the convenience of their electronic devices, so that, by federal fiat, all federal elections, would have in place within a short period of time, such as one or two years, the infrastructure to accept online voting.  It would then be hoped, that State elections, would soon follow suit, though not all would initially, since States are entitled to their own peculiar voting structures, as long as it is non-discriminatory and does not prejudicially disenfranchise eligible voters.


An appropriate way to structure online voting, would first be to not to limit it to just being on the day of the election, but in general, to be in conformance with early voting procedures as currently allowed.  Additionally, the access to online voting should basically be through any smart electronic device, and while some critics might argue that online voting would be discriminatory against the poor and internet disadvantaged people, this would probably be mitigated by volunteers within the community providing mobile electronic devices which would thereby allow citizens to vote that do not have ready access to the internet.


All those that complain that internet voting might be or would be subjected to tampering from rogue nation-states or other malefactors, are using that as a convenient excuse, when, in fact, the very business and the running of government, could not in this present age, survive without reliable and secure internet activity.  This would strongly suggest that the United States has the wherewithal to produce a robust and secure voting apparatus that will not be tampered with.


Presently, there are millions upon millions of Americans that don't vote, and by far the best way to encourage more Americans to vote is to provide them with easy access to register and to vote, of which the internet infrastructure is well constructed to do just that.  After all, the 15th, 17th, 19th, 23rd, 24th, and 26th Constitutional Amendments all deal with the right to vote, in one form of another, in addition to the Voting Right Act of 1965; so that, voting appears to be something that the people and its representatives believe to be vitally important, of which, getting more people to get engaged with voting and their responsibility and duty to vote, would reflect more fairly a population vested in its governance.